Record number of people paying with card in Germany

Record number of people paying with card in Germany

A piece of plastic is haunting cash payment-obsessed Germany; the EC-Karte. In 2022 more than 6,7 billion payments were made using EC bank cards.

Germans love paying with card now

Many innocent travellers to Germany may have been laughed out of the Spati when attempting to pay for their one-euro Sternburg beer with a swanky start-up bank card. But recent data collected by Frankfurt-based company, Euro Kartensystem has revealed that the tide may be turning in the federal republic. 

People with a German bank account and EC-Karte are more regularly paying with plastic than opting to count out their coins. 2021 was already record year for card payments in Germany. But not for long, in 2022 the number of electronic transactions rose by 13,4 percent, to 6,7 billion over the course of the year.

This amounted to four out of every five transactions in Germany being paid by card in 2022 - a number which just a few years ago would have seemed ludicrous to those familiar with Germany’s Luddite persuasions.

Contactless payments beloved in 2022

Whatsmore, some people in Germany are becoming so besotted with tech that they probably can’t even remember their PIN numbers. According to estimates in the banking industry, contactless payment is now possible at 95 percent of payment terminals in Germany’s retail sector and a large portion of the 100 million EC-Karten in Germany now have the NFC chip required for contactless payments.

In 2022, the average amount that people were paying when they chose the contactless method rose from 37,70 euros in 2021 to 38,50 euros in 2022. Over the year, EC-Karte company Girocard made a 284-billion euro turnover.

Thumb image credit: NinaViktoria /

Olivia Logan


Olivia Logan

Editor for Germany at IamExpat Media. Olivia first came to Germany in 2013 to work as an Au Pair. Since studying English Literature and German in Scotland, Freiburg and Berlin...

Read more



Leave a comment